I was watching this video clip with great interest. Charging no-show fees has always been a hotly debated and carefully contemplated topic even a decade ago when I worked as a certified medical assistant. So, I was curious what the video might tell me that's (not) new...
In my role as a certified medical assistant a few years ago, I have NEVER!!!!! Yes, NEEE-VER... seen a doctor sit and twiddle his/her thumbs to bridge the time gap from a no-show. You have to understand, appointments were scheduled tight, with so many patients per 15 or 20 minute time slots, fully aware that some patients might go over their allotted time in the exam room, while others might be right on the mark, or take up less time, so that in the end it would all even out.
No-show slots were a welcome break to direct the doctor's attention to phone messages attached to patient charts that had come in during the day and needed to be addressed so we could call the patients back with the doctor's instructions; furthermore gaps were filled with last minute sick calls and in the end they were a welcome brake to catch up with the daily grind. As the day progressed the doctor inadvertently almost always fell behind and patients who arrived on time for their appointment wound up sitting in the waiting room over 30 minutes, or more, just to be seen. A no-show gave us a little breathing room and in the end as the day progressed and closing time finally approached everybody was seen and cared for.
Knowing both sides of the coin, here is where I stand on this topic: if the doctor charges patients up to $125 for no-show then patients should charge the doctor the same amount for the time they are being kept in the waiting room beyond the scheduled appointment time. So, please!!!!! Let's just call it even, a win-win situation and give and take relationship between a trusting doctor and trusted patients.
In closing: I understand the old days of doctors in a horse buggy working for an apple and an egg are long gone. House calls in wind and weather any time a day are a thing of the past. The practice of medicine, while still noble and respected and an invaluable service to the community has become a for profit business. For more on medical practice management and medical billing questions visit our open and active forum.